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Centre for the Community School


The centre aims to:

  • Facilitate the development and offering of modules at both under and postgraduate levels on the historical, sociological and practical aspects of the community school in South Africa.
  • Develop a course on the community school teacher that will focus on the knowledge, dispositions and skills required by current and aspiring educators in the community school.


  • Nelson Mandela University Education students will undertake internships in community schools as part of their course requirements.
  • Due to the cross-disciplinary focus of the Centre, internships will also be offered to students in other Nelson Mandela University faculties or departments (e.g. Social Work, Psychology, Counselling).

Research & Publications

  • The Centre’s research agenda aims to extend and deepen the knowledge base around community schools and the role of the school in the development context of South Africa.
  • Research opportunities for both master’s and doctoral students will be available through our projects.

Community School improvement programmes

  • A variety of programmes and events that focus on school and community improvement, including workshops, short learning programmes, guest lectures, film screenings, community conversations and information sessions.
  • Short Learning Programme: “Building the Community School: an approach to school improvement in South Africa”.

Resource Centre

The Centre will serve as a national resource on community school-related resources and materials, keenly elevating the concept as a credible, replicable and sustainable model for educational improvement.

Partnerships and Networking

  • The Centre seeks to establish relationships with groups and organisations nationally and internationally in order to support and promote the concept of the community school.
  • Co-host of the Manyanyo Community Schools Conference that brings together education practitioners, scholars and
  • policymakers to share emerging research on community schools and practice-based models of school improvement.